Did you know that during pregnancy your body’s need for protein increases? In fact, you should be aiming to consume between 80-100 grams of protein a day since it is quickly metabolized by your body. Protein is vital for fetal development, stabilizing blood sugar levels and so much more.
For someone like myself who doesn’t eat a lot of meat, this information was daunting. How on earth can I consume THAT much protein everyday?
First and foremost, it’s important to keep a journal of what you eat (there are plenty of free apps that can help you do this like My Fitness Pal) to keep track of your nutrition and help you reach those daily goals.
Here are a few ways to sneak in extra protein if you’re not a big meat eater!
Eggs – Not only does one egg pack 6 grams of protein but they are also are rich in choline which is critical for fetal brain development. Aim to eat 2 eggs a day! Try an over-hard cooked egg on whole grain bread with a slice of cheese and 1/2 an avocado.
Hemp Heart Seeds – Just 3 teaspoons of hemp seeds contains 10 grams of protein and loads of healthy omega 3 fatty acids. Sprinkle them on salads, in smoothies or even on whole grain toast with cream cheese or avocado.
Greek Yogurt – While I’m not a huge fan of the texture myself, its a great way to get protein (up to 17 grams)! Just watch out for the ones packed with sugar. Try the original flavor and mix in some fresh fruit, flax/hemp seeds, nuts and enjoy it as a snack. You can also add to a smoothie for a creamy texture.
Raw Protein Powder – While it’s always best to get nutrients from whole food sources, this protein powder is pretty good as far as supplements are concerned. It’s got 17 grams of protein per serving and is also gluten/soy free as well as organic and vegan. You can purchase it here and add to your smoothies or just mix with almond milk.
What are your favorite ways to sneak a little extra protein into your diet?
To learn more about pregnancy nutrition, exercise and natural birth, sign up for my 10-week Birth Boot Camp course for couples here in Bossier City, LA.